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Published February 12, 2023 Updated February 12, 2023

Castle Rock Club

Castle Rock Club playing cards featuring Russian rock stars and musicians, c. 2000.

2000 Russia Music Add to Collection
Castle Rock Club playing cards (undated), Russia, c.2000

The Castle Rock Club, located in the centre of St Petersburg, claims to be the oldest rock shop in Russia and the largest in Europe offering more than 50,000 items of rock paraphernalia, clothes, shoes, t-shirts, souvenirs and gifts. It is the place to go for band merchandise, CDs, DVDs, concert tickets, or related accessories, and also for meetings with rock musicians and autograph sessions.

This 36-card pack is slightly larger than standard (10 x 7 cm) and is something of a mystery. Each card shows a photograph of presumably a Russian rock star, singer, group member, instrumentalist or others associated with the rock industry. Unfortunately, there is no indication of the date of publication nor the identity of the individuals concerned. See the box

Castle Rock Club playing cards (undated), Russia, c.2000 Castle Rock Club playing cards (undated), Russia, c.2000

Above: Castle Rock Club playing cards (undated), Russia, c.2000.

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By Peter Burnett

Member since July 27, 2022

I graduated in Russian and East European Studies from Birmingham University in 1969. It was as an undergraduate in Moscow in 1968 that I stumbled upon my first 3 packs of “unusual” playing cards which fired my curiosity and thence my life-long interest. I began researching and collecting cards in the early 1970s, since when I’ve acquired over 3,330 packs of non-standard cards, mainly from North America, UK and Western Europe, and of course from Russia and the former communist countries.

Russian Playing Cards

Following my retirement from the Bodleian Library in Dec. 2007 I took up a new role as Head of Library Development at the International Network for the Availability of Scientific Publications (INASP) to support library development in low-income countries. This work necessitated regular training visits to many sub-Saharan African countries and also further afield, to Vietnam, Nepal and Bangladesh – all of which provided rich opportunities to further expand my playing card collection.

Since 2019 I’ve been working part-time in the Bodleian Library where I’ve been cataloguing the bequest of the late Donald Welsh, founder of the English Playing Card Society.


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